…about GitHub open source commit streak.

This is, I think, partially triggered by Marc Gravell’s post. I currently have had a GitHub commit streak going on 1878 days. The other night I realised, that I don’t care about it any more, and more so, I’m not sure why I did to start with.

I didn’t even mean to start doing it. I just noticed one day that I had done something every day for a couple of weeks, and vaguely wondered how long I could keep that up for. It turns out the answer is “quite a while”. For the most part, it was easy to do - just a small commit a day, it only takes a few minutes right? But more and more often, I noticed that it was having a negative effect on what I was writing.

For instance, I wanted to learn about Nomad, but had been putting it off, as it wouldn’t involve making any public commits. So each time I came to start, I couldn’t until I had done a public commit, and once that commit had was done, so was my motivation. Which meant learning Nomad didn’t happen for a long time.

It also affected what I did with old repositories on GitHub - I wanted to remove some which serve no useful purpose any more, but I couldn’t do that either, as that would remove their commits from the streak. Likewise, I have a new version of my TwelveFactor repository, but I really should remove the old version. But doing so would remove the commits from the streak too. So, as you might have guessed, I haven’t done that either. Maybe soon. I have a lot of writing to go with it too.

On the subject of writing, that also suffered. It takes a lot of effort to sit down and start writing a post, but usually, the words flow pretty smoothly once I am going. But knowing I need to spare some energy for the commit of the day makes it even harder to start writing, so I just haven’t been. There are a lot of drafts with bullet-point lists waiting though, so maybe they will begin to see the light of day soon.

The irony is not lost on me that making this post will increase the commit count (GitHub pages based blog), so I am not committing (or finishing) this post until at least a day has passed.

I decided on the 7th December 2018 not to make any commits. After that had happened - the act of deciding mind you, not the day itself, I felt a lot better. I do not need to do anything. I can go and finish the book a friend recommended me. I can spend my evenings learning about things I want to. Or just do nothing some evenings.

No more worrying about public commits. It’s just not worth it.